Scrapbook Layouts, Your Craft & Soul Events

The Focus Your Craft & Soul Blog Hop & Giveaway! {NOW CLOSED}

(This post is part of my Focus Your Craft & Soul Blog Event – see the list of all the posts HERE!)

I hope you’ve already found some inspiration from the event so far, and you are about to find a lot more… it’s time for the Focus Your Craft & Soul Blog Hop!

I didn’t have time to arrange one of these during the last event and I really missed it. It’s so fun to pop round a few of my online friend’s blogs and see how they’ve been inspired by the theme. I’m going to share a project of my own with you, then I shall send you on to 12 other blogs! If you go the whole way around the hop and leave a comment on each one you will be entered to win this prize:

WRMK Insta Album Shine Giveaway at Jennifer Grace Creates for the Focus Your Craft & Soul Blog Hop

A WRMK Insta Album Kit (Shine) which includes a 4×4″ album, 20 photo sleeves, journaling cards, and three self-inking stamps!

The giveaway is open internationally, and it will close on Sunday the 24th of May at 10pm BST {NOW CLOSED}. The winner will be announced on my blog, along with all the other winners, on Thursday the 28th of May, so make sure you check back then to see if you’ve won.

Here’s my project for the hop… I decided to FOCUS on the story…

The Minions:

A Focus On The Story Layout at Jennifer Grace Creates (part of the Focus Your Craft & Soul Blog Hop)

I wanted to focus on the story because the photo isn’t the best quality. It was taken on my smart phone, it’s quite blurry and grainy and the lighting isn’t great – I’ve taken a close up so you can see the detail a bit better:

A Focus On The Story Layout at Jennifer Grace Creates (part of the Focus Your Craft & Soul Blog Hop)

Despite the poor photo quality I really wanted to scrapbook the picture, because it’s such a great moment captured – of my little sister surrounded by her nieces and nephews… because she was playing a Minions app game on her phone, and it drew them all in like moths to a flame! This was also taken just before my sister was going travelling and we weren’t sure how long she was going to be away for, so it was great for her to have some quality time with all the kids.

To help me focus on the story I planned out my journaling first of all. This is soooo rare for me – I usually forget about adding a title and journaling until a page is almost finished, then I have to squeeze it all in! I chose some frames to use for the journaling and also picked out a background page which looked a bit wall-like, so the photo and frames were arranged like a gallery:

A Focus On The Story Layout at Jennifer Grace Creates (part of the Focus Your Craft & Soul Blog Hop)

I backed the frames with paper from a Simples Stories Sn@P 6×6 pad, just by drawing around the frames onto the paper before cutting it out, then adhering it to the back of the frames using a repositionable tape runner (being able to reposition it meant that I could tweak the paper to make sure the lines were straight in the frames):

A Focus On The Story Layout at Jennifer Grace Creates (part of the Focus Your Craft & Soul Blog Hop)

I wrote the journaling in the large frames, and added the date to one of the smaller ones. I left the other small frame empty so that I could overlap some embellishments on it. I stuck these and the photo all down, with a bit of ribbon added too – to underline the frames a bit:

A Focus On The Story Layout at Jennifer Grace Creates (part of the Focus Your Craft & Soul Blog Hop)

Note that I also stuck the photo flat onto the page, rather than popping it up with foam tape, because I wanted the story frames to be the things that ‘stood out’.

I focused on the story even more by adding extra journaling at the bottom of the photo. This was jounaling that didn’t continue the story, but rather gave a different look at the situation. The journaling in the frames talks about what was actually happening in the picture, where as the ‘Auntie Katy = Fun’ at the side of the photo is what I imagine the kids are all thinking, and the bit below the photo (about how sometimes technology can be a thing to bring us together and bridge generations) is my inner dialogue about what the photo makes me think about:

A Focus On The Story Layout at Jennifer Grace Creates (part of the Focus Your Craft & Soul Blog Hop)

I made sure this extra journaling didn’t detract too much attention from the main story by adding all the main embellies around the story frames, including an arrow pointing at the date:

A Focus On The Story Layout at Jennifer Grace Creates (part of the Focus Your Craft & Soul Blog Hop)

I also made sure to include some bright yellow embellishments, especially some enamel dots, as a nod to the bright colour of Minions:

A Focus On The Story Layout at Jennifer Grace Creates (part of the Focus Your Craft & Soul Blog Hop)

The story certainly stands out on this page for me, what do you think?

Be Inspired:

Use frames to hold your journaling

Pick an accent colour to match your subject matter rather than colours in your photo

Make a gallery-wall – on your actual wall or on a layout, card, etc

If you’ve only just discovered my blog via one of the other blogs in the hop then hello! It’s nice to meet you. I’m Jennifer Grace and I’m the host of the hop – it’s part of a weekend long event I’m holding, full of tutorials, giveaways, and more, so make sure you check out the start and the grand giveaway HERE.

Now it’s time to send you on to the next blog in the hop… the wonderful Sheena at Scraps And Scribbles!

If you get lost at anytime during the hop then here’s the full list to help you out:

 

Remember to comment on them all for a chance to win the WRMK album! {NOW CLOSED}

I’ll see you again at 7pm,

Jennifer x

Your Craft & Soul Events

The Focus Your Craft & Soul Welcome and Grand Giveaway! {NOW CLOSED}

(This post is part of my Focus Your Craft & Soul Blog Event – see the list of all the posts HERE!)

Hello and welcome to the start of my FREE blog event. It’s time to…

Focus Your Craft & Soul!

Focus Your Craft & Soul Blog Event at Jennifer Grace Creates 15th-17th May 2015

If you haven’t heard about this event before, then here are the details: This weekend (15th-17th May 2015) from 4pm – 10pm Friday and 10am – 10pm Saturday and Sunday (BST) there will be posts going live EVERY HOUR! There will be lots of crafts, tutorials, challenges, tips, a blog hop, and of course some lovely giveaways!

All giveaways AND challenges are open for entry until Sunday the 24th of May at 10pm BST {NOW CLOSED} so you’ve got a week to join in.

The theme for the event is loosely based on my word-of-the-year ‘Focus’. This will cover a variety of ideas on how to focus your crafting, about living in the moment, making sure you appreciate the little things, and how to use focal points. We’ll also be using a lot of icons like targets, frames, arrows, triangles, and cameras!

Let’s kick things off with the Grand Giveaway! {NOW CLOSED}

The Focus Your Craft & Soul Grand Giveaway at Jennifer Grace Creates! Closes 24th May 2015 at 10pm BST

One lucky person will win this prize package. It contains…

Big Things:

4 sheets of Simple Stories 12×12 paper (I Am ‘4×4 Elements’ and ‘Beautiful’, Life Documented ‘The Daily Lens’, and Daily Grind ‘Rise & Shine’)

3 sheets of Crate Paper 12×12 paper (Craft Market ‘Pattern’ glitter paper and ‘Studio’, and Journey ‘Tribal’)

Simple Stories I Am 12×12 Fundamentals Stickers

A Heidi Swapp 12×12 Stencil (Arrows)

A My Mind’s Eye 6×6 Pad (Just Splendid)

Embellishments:

Freckled Fawn Puffy Alpha Stickers (Pink) and Wood Chips (Arrows), AC Shimelle True Stories Camera Stamp, Crate Paper Journey Puffy Stickers and half a pack of Craft Market Wood Veneer Embroidery Hoops (winner gets 3), half a pack of Simple Stories I Am Chipboard Frames (winner gets 12), AC Pink & White Bakers Twine and Teal Polkadot Ribbon.

So how do you get the chance to win these goodies?

We’re going back to the old way to win the grand giveaway – by commenting! You could just leave a comment on this post – that will give you one entry into the draw. But every comment on any post that goes live this weekend will count as another entry into the draw!

You will only be entered into the Grand Giveaway if you have commented on this welcome post. That way if you don’t want to win the prize – maybe you already own all these goodies (?!) – then don’t comment here, but you can still comment on all the other posts this weekend (including all the other giveaways) without being entered.

To tempt you to enter, and show you what can be done with some of the items in the prize pack, here’s a brooch I made using the same supplies…

Wood Veneer Hoop Brooch:

A Brooch using the Crate Paper Embroidery Hoop Wood Veneer Shapes at Jennifer Grace Creates

To make one for yourself:

1. Draw around the hoop wood veneer on some patterned paper.
2. Cut the circle out, and stick a phrase on – I cut the ‘on a journey’ phrase up so it didn’t cover up all the arrows on the paper.
3. Add some Mod Podge or other wet glue around the back of the wood hoop.
4. Press the circle onto the glue. If any seeps out onto the front of the circle then smooth it out with a piece of kitchen paper.
5. You can also add some Mod Podge around the edge of the hoop to make sure the paper is sealed at the edges.
6. Stick on a brooch-back using Glossy Accents or a similar strong glue.
7. When the Glossy Accents is dry flip the brooch over and finish decorating the front. I stuck half the butterfly stick straight onto the hoop and used a foam dot under the other half to make sure it was level.

A Brooch using the Crate Paper Embroidery Hoop Wood Veneer Shapes at Jennifer Grace Creates

I will add a brooch-back into the prize package in case the winner wants to make this too!

A Brooch using the Crate Paper Embroidery Hoop Wood Veneer Shapes at Jennifer Grace Creates

Be Inspired:

Use some papercrafting supplies to make a brooch

Fill a negative space (eg inside a circle) with some arrow patterned paper

Cut up a phrase to make it fit your project

Make sure you have ‘liked’ the Jennifer Grace Creates Facebook Page if you want to chat during the event. If you enjoy the blog posts during the weekend it would be great if you could share the posts on Pinterest or other social media, or post your projects to my Facebook page etc (you can hashtag #focusyourcraft on anything to do with this event). It makes my hard work worth it when I see my posts, or your projects inspired by them, popping up all over the place!

Don’t forget to comment here to be entered into the Grand Giveaway! The giveaway is open internationally, and it will close at 10pm (BST) on Sunday the 24th of May. {NOW CLOSED}

I see you again at 5pm! Are you excited that the event has started?!

Jennifer x

Industry News & Reviews

CHA 2015 Product Picks!

I would love to go to the big CHA show in America one year. For now though I have to make do with stalking the manufacturer blogs and drooling over new goodies from afar!

This is a round up of the things which are exciting me the most, that I just can’t wait to get my hands on! I’m posting them here to remind me of the things I want to buy, and to show them off to you in case you missed the reveals (I cannot be held responsible if this makes you spend money when they hit the shops… if you’re on a spending freeze look away now)!

My CHA 2015 Product Picks…

My Cha 2015 Product Picks at Jennifer Grace Creates

Heidi Swapp Minc Machine

Heidi Swapp Minc Machine

Um, yeah, this is awesome. A machine for foiling and making things shiny! I’ve already ordered one from Create & Craft TV HERE, though they are sold out at the moment – I’m not surprised, even non-crafters who I’ve shown the Minc videos (like THIS ONE) too have oohed-and-aahed over it! You can use it to foil Heidi Swapp’s matching collection of tags, papers, etc, or you can make your own with a laser printer or toner copier (it doesn’t work with inkjet printers).

I haven’t always been a lover of foiled things, mainly because they are soooo hard to photograph and I put almost everything I make onto this blog. But they have been growing and growing on me, and my Gingerbread House page and my Ready for Christmas page are my favourite layouts from my the end of last year, because the gold foil is so pretty.

I also loved the idea of different coloured foils, so I’ve ordered hot pink, teal, and mint foils with my machine. I can’t wait to start playing! You can expect to see some shiny things in my Etsy shop soon too! Here’s the choices of foils:

Heidi Swapp Minc Foils

Pink Paislee Citrus Bliss

Pink Paislee Citrus Bliss Collection

Oh this just feels so refreshing to look at! It’s got perfect springtime colours but with a bit of a summery twist with the flamingoes and lemons. I like that this will extend the use of the collection.

I can see me using it for lots of projects. I especially like the puffy stickers – they are so cute and the variety of sizes is good for me:

Pink Paislee Citrus Bliss Collection

Crate Paper Journey

Crate Paper Journey Collection

Crate Paper are good at bringing out collections that I want to buy, and this one is trendy and interesting! Some of the icons are a bit too USA related, but they don’t dominate it so I can overlook that. Especially when it means you get cute camper-vans, feathers, arrows, and cork and glitter details!

I’m most looking forward to getting the ephemera set. We’re bound to go camping at some point this year, so these will come in handy for scrapbooking our adventures:

Crate Paper Journey Collection

Simple Stories I Am

Simple Stories I Am Collection

The concept of this collection appeals to me – it’s all about documenting our own stories. I could imagine making a mini-book with this about my life before kids, which I could share with them.

The ‘I am’ quote is a great page title starter for when you’re stuck for title ideas too! The thing I want most from this collection is these stickers, which include lots of ‘I AM’ quotes in different colours:

Simple Stories I Am Collection

Pinkfresh Studio Up In The Clouds

Pinkfresh Studio Collection

Pinkfresh Studio have been producing some gorgeous colourful embellishments for a while, but now they are also bringing out papers to make a whole collection release. Up In The Clouds is bright and playful which fits my style!

One of the items I love is the 3×4 cards, as they look like they were fun to design and would add so much life to my projects:

Pinkfresh Studio Collection

Chickaniddy Crafts 365

Chickaniddy Crafts 365 Collection

The 365 collection from Chickaniddy Crafts is bold and cute at the same time. It’s an everyday collection that can be used for an abundance of projects!

I really want the stamp set, the geometric shapes and little phrases are all the kinds of things I love to dot around my pages:

Chickaniddy Crafts 365 Collection

There we go, they are the things I’m most looking forward to getting my hands on. That’s quite enough don’t you think?

If you want to see if you missed anything else there’s a good list of links HERE at Paper Vine.

Have you spotted something you’d love to buy? What kinds of collections do you look forward to seeing at this time of year – spring, travel, or everyday themes, or something else?

Bye for now,

Jennifer x

Scrapbook Layouts

I’m Back! Layouts I’ve Made This Summer

Hello hello!

I’m back at last – we’ve had a new phone line and modem installed so I can use the internet again! Hooray, how I’ve missed it!

I’m going to be blogging regularly again now, but first here’s a few layouts to share which I’ve made over the last couple of months. I haven’t been doing too many scrapbook projects because with out the internet I was low on inspiration, plus it was the summer holidays so I was busy keeping the kids entertained! But I have managed a few pages…

Hello To Just Being Happy:

Hello To Just Being Happy by Jennifer Grace

This page and the next one (Techno Kids) were both made during a lovely evening spent at my friend Sarah’s house. This layout has a lot of Simple Stories Good Day Sunshine on it because I’d just picked it up from her and I couldn’t wait to use it!

I couldn’t decide where to put the title, so Sarah suggested just using the ‘Hello’ word on the background paper, or maybe adding small letter stickers to extend it for a title, and I love how it turned out:

Hello To Just Being Happy by Jennifer Grace

This ‘Life’s A Beach’ card was perfect for me, I love the laid back feeling I get at the beach:

Hello To Just Being Happy by Jennifer Grace

Techno Kids:

Techno Kids by Jennifer Grace

I was really glad to get this photo of my kids absorbed in their Leap-Pad Explorer, because it was the perfect way to document how much childhood has changed from when I was small. My kids are very technology savvy, so I have to be careful that they actually do normal playing, as well as playing computer games and watching tv!

I used lots of different bits from my stash for the above page, but there are a few bits each from the Pink Paislee Hey Kids and the Crate Paper Boys Rule collections.

Splash Zone:

Splash Zone by Jennifer Grace

The photos on my ‘Splash Zone’ page are from last year, but we have just visited the same place (Weymouth Sea Life Centre) again this summer and had lots of fun again. My brother and his wife and kids were visiting at the time, and me and my brother may have had a small waterfight of our own (no kids nearby) – it was flipping freezing!

I made this page whilst playing with some Pilot Frixion Pens, which Pilot sent me to try out and record a video showing how you can erase the pens and re-write with them:

 

They were fun to use, but I probably wouldn’t use them on scrapbook layouts too much – they suggest they shouldn’t be used for legal documents so I’m guessing the writing you do with them won’t last forever. They’ll be good to use for notes and homework though, and I might use them to try out my journaling on the page, then erase it and write it again with my usual journaling pen!

Well, that’s the layouts I’ve been making (there will be a new Scrap 365 Sketch page coming at the end of next week too).

I will be back in the next few days to show you another project I made this summer: a box frame filled with a fantastical scene – with a man riding a unicycle and wearing a top hat. It is mostly brilliant, and only slightly crazy I assure you!

Have a great weekend!

Jennifer x